Along with spring practice, one of the annual rites this time of year is suspensions from said practice for various off-field issues.
USF is the latest program to pull the trigger on the non-punitive punitive measure, announcing that three players have been indefinitely suspended by new head coach Willie Taggart. The trio consists of wide receivers Terrence Mitchell and Chris Dunkley, along with running back Bradley Battles.
Taggart said each of the players will have the opportunity to return to the team, but will first have to prove they deserve something that’s a right and not a privilege.
“They could be back. They have to do something, do what it takes to get back out there,” Taggart said by way of Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times. “They can be back. They’re not just going to get on this team. You don’t just get on this team any kind of way. They have to make sure they’re doing their part to be on this football team.”
Mitchell last season finished second on the Bulls in receptions (31) and receiving yards (414). Auman notes, however, that the new coaching staff had already decided to move Mitchell to cornerback. The fact that Mitchell will likely miss most if not all of spring practice will certainly hinder his transition to the defensive side of the ball.
Dunkley transferred to USF from Florida in May of 2011 and sat out that season to satisfy NCAA rules. In September of last year, Dunkley, who played in the first five games in 2012, was charged domestic violence in late September and was suspended from the program a day later. It’s unclear if his latest suspension is merely a continuation of the first one or is the result of a new incident.
Each of the past two seasons, Battles has missed game-time due to suspensions.
The polls are meaningless. Especially any poll that isn’t the College Football Playoff top 25 and even then, as the TCU learned late last season, even the penultimate ranking is as meaningless as the paper they’re metaphorically written on.
Still, they’re catnip to college football fans and observers. Place them in front of us and we can’t help but gnaw on them.
And with that said, a bit of milestone was reached in Sunday’s Associated Press Top 25, as the SEC was completely shut out of the top five.
That group breaks down as follows:
- Ohio State
- Michigan State
An SEC free top five hasn’t happened in nearly five full years; October 10, 2010 was the last time such a thing occurred. Oddly enough, two of the same five culprits occupied that ranking as well:
- Ohio State
- Boise State
Underscoring the lesson of the first paragraph, eventual national champion Auburn checked in at No. 6. Those Tigers moved up a spot the following week and never looked back.
None of this means anything at all, until it does. But that doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun along the way.
After battling to get on the field throughout the season’s first five weeks, Georgia is shutting down inside linebacker Reggie Carter for the rest of the year, Dawgs head coach Mark Richt confirmed Sunday evening.
Carter fought shoulder problems throughout the year, and saw action in only one of Georgia’s first five games. A junior, Carter will be eligible for a medical redshirt.
The Snellville, Ga., native recorded 28 tackles in 12 appearances in 2014 and eight tackles in eight appearances as a freshman in 2013. UAB transfer Jake Ganus started in the spot many pegged to Carter before injure ruptured his season.
Carter totaled two stops in one appearance this season.